Festival Leaders

Festival Music Leaders

Dr. John Sinclair

Festival Conductor

John V. Sinclair, Festival Chorus and Orchestra Conductor, has conducted the Moravian Music Festivals since 1999; 2016 will be his sixth Festival.

Dr. Sinclair is the Director of Music for Rollins College and holds the John M. Tiedtke Chair of Music. A master teacher, he has received many awards, including the Hugh F. McKean Teaching Award and the Arthur Vining Davis Fellowship. He teaches conducting, a variety of other classes, and serves as the primary conductor for the Department of Music. He also currently conducts the Messiah Choral Society (Winter Park), and has conducted for the Berkshire Choral Festival and numerous others. He was twice named United Arts of Central Florida’s “Outstanding Music Educator of the Year” in consecutive years. Florida International Magazine selected him as one of its “Power Players in the Arts.” His Alma Mater, William Jewell College, honored him with their prestigious Citation for Achievement.

John was appointed the Artistic Director and Conductor of the Bach Festival Society of Winter Park, Florida, in 1990. Under his leadership, the Winter Park Bach Festival has earned high critical praise and is widely considered to be one of the finest oratorio choirs in the state of Florida and among the best in the U.S. During the past twenty years, he has made over one thousand appearances as conductor, clinician, or lecturer throughout the United States and in many foreign countries.

John is also a conductor of the Candlelight Processional at EPCOT and has conducted recordings for Warner Brothers, Walt Disney Corporation, the Moravian Music Foundation, and the Bach Festival Society.

Dr. Nola Reed Knouse

Festival Music Director

The Rev. Dr. Nola Reed Knouse holds degrees from Wake Forest University and the Eastman School of Music of the University of Rochester, with specialization in eighteenth-century German music theory and performance.

Nola has held teaching positions at the Eastman School of Music, Oregon State University, UNC School of the Arts Community Music School, Wake Forest University, and Salem College. Her articles and book reviews have appeared in Current Musicology, Music Theory Spectrum, Journal of Undergraduate Mathematics, and the Moravian Music Journal. In addition to her work as Director of the Moravian Music Foundation, she is active as a flutist, composer, and arranger. Nola is a lifelong Moravian and a native of Winston-Salem, North Carolina. She holds the Certificate in Theological Studies from Moravian Theological Seminary and is an ordained Moravian minister under call to specialized ministry at the Moravian Music Foundation.

Nola’s valuable definitive resource, The Music of the Moravian Church in America, published in 2008, and available from the Moravian Music Foundation, is hailed as a “marvelous collection of essays” and a “giant step” in American music scholarship.

Chris Wormald

Festival Concert Band Director

Chris Wormald was UK Music Teacher of The Year in 2001 and prior to that he had received The Harry Mortimer Medal in 1998 from the Worshipful Company of Musicians at the British Open Brass Band Championships in Symphony Hall, Birmingham for his outstanding contribution to British music education through conducting brass and wind bands. Chris has been a long time member of the British National Association of Brass Band Adjudicators (A.B.B.A.), National Association of Brass Band Conductors (N.A.B.B.C.) and has won numerous contests, competitions, festivals and awards as conductor, horn player, teacher and arranger.

Mr. Wormald conducted his Smithills Senior Brass Band at Home Moravian Church, Winston-Salem, while on tour in North Carolina in 2014. It was that summer, he made many friends in the Moravian Church.

Chris has conducted brass bands, wind bands and orchestras professionally since 1983. His UK brass band highlights include conducting Brighouse & Rastrick at the 1994 Leek Arts Festival and conducting Grimethorpe in concerts from Reading Town Hall to South Wales as recently as 2007 whilst the band was National Champions of Great Britain. Chris joined James Shepherd Versatile Brass as its horn soloist for five years at the personal invitation of Jim Shepherd in 1990, the year he was also appointed to Smithills School.

Chris formed his internationally renowned, multiple UK and World champion Smithills School Senior Brass Band in 1991 and over the next twenty years of competition together they won over fifty major national and international competitions including becoming inaugural World Brass Band Champions in Kerkrade, Holland, in July 2005 (Adult, 3rd Section). They also won an unprecedented twelve National Festival of Music For Youth titles at the Royal Festival Hall in London and Symphony Hall in Birmingham in sixteen years including two runs of five consecutive years in that time; a level of success never achieved by any school before or since. Chris has conducted Smithills all over the World, from Norway to New Zealand and Japan to the USA (five concert tours) in addition to eight times at the Royal Albert Hall in London.

Chris has over one hundred adjudications to his credit all over the World since 1991, with emphasis on Championship Section and European national contests since 2004. From 2016 Chris has signed to arrange for Kirklees Music, another of the World’s leading brass, wind and percussion music publishing firms.

Allen Frank

Asst. Festival Concert Band Director

Allen Frank is Assistant Director of Instrumental Music at Liberty High School in Bethlehem, PA.  Before earning a BA in Music from Moravian College, Allen served in the United States Marine Corps where he was a tuba and vocal soloist as a member of the Quantico Marine Band.

As a conductor, Allen had the honor of participating at the 2007 (Moravian) Unity Brass Festival in Cape Town, South Africa, and has led the Moravian Music Weekend (2015) at Laurel Ridge, in NC, and was Director of the 2013 Moravian Music Festival Band.

At Liberty High School, he directs the 300-member Liberty Grenadier Band. The band has marched in the Rose Parade, shared the stage with the Red Hot Chilli Pipers, opened for the Royal Marines Band and travelled to Hawaii for the 75th Anniversary of Pearl Harbor. Allen is member of the Mainstreet Brass Quintet and does freelance work around the Lehigh Valley.

Prior to his collegiate studies, Allen studied at the Armed Forces School of Music in Little Creek, VA before a three-year tour of duty with the United States Marine Corps Band. As a member of the Marine Corps Band, Allen served as principal tubist and soloist for the concert and marching bands, as well as the band’s brass quintet. In his time with the Marines, Allen had musical collaborations with such names as the Canadian Brass, the Neville Brothers, and the “President’s Own” Marine Band. Allen was a member of the national touring cast of the Tony Award Winning Broadway musical “Blast!” before returning to Pennsylvania to begin a career in music education. Allen has also performed as a tuba soloist with the Allentown Band, which carries the name of America’s oldest civilian concert band.

Susan Keck Foster

Accompanist, Organist

Susan Keck Foster is currently Organist for Home Moravian Church in historic Old Salem, Winston-Salem, NC and accompanist for the Danville Area Choral Arts Society. She holds a Bachelor of Music in organ performance from Converse College and a Master of Music in organ and harpsichord performance from Shenandoah Conservatory. In addition, she has studied at the Eastman School of Music, the Oberlin Baroque Performance Institute, and the Peabody Conservatory of Music, specializing in the study of Baroque performance practice of keyboard and chamber music.

Susan has held numerous professional music positions as accompanist, concert and church organist, and harpsichordist. She is a former faculty member of Shenandoah Conservatory, where she founded the Winchester Baroque Ensemble, a period instrument ensemble. Susan has accompanied numerous soloists and choral ensembles, including Winchester (VA) Musica Viva, BachChor Ortenau (Germany), and the Roanoke (VA) Symphony Orchestra Chorus. She has performed extensively in the Eastern United States, as well as in Europe and in Mexico.

Active in the American Guild of Organists, Susan holds the AGO Colleague certification. She serves on the Board of the Greater Greensboro (NC) AGO chapter.

Susan is married to a United Methodist minister, who is currently pastor of Unity Moravian Church, Lewisville, NC. She is an Enrolled Agent, licensed to practice before the IRS, and runs a tax preparation business for clergy named Clergy Tax Professionals.

Amanda Moody Schumpert

Festival Chair

Amanda Moody Schumpert, Chair, 25th Moravian Music Festival Planning Committee

Amanda Moody-Schumpert is the Director of Music and Christian Education at Calvary Moravian Church in Winston-Salem, where she has served since the fall of 2009. Originally from Kingsport, TN, Amanda completed undergraduate and graduate degrees in Voice Performance and Pedagogy from Westminster Choir College in Princeton, NJ, and a post-graduate degree in Opera Performance as part of the Fletcher Opera Institute from the University of North Carolina School of the Arts.  Amanda is also the Director of UNCSA’s SummerVoice Intensive – a program designed to encourage and prepare middle and high school aged students for a college career in voice.

Amanda has been seen on several opera stages throughout the US, including work with New Jersey Opera, Arizona Opera, Tulsa Opera, Bronx Opera, and Piedmont Opera. As a member of the Westminster Choir, she has sung with some of the world’s leading orchestra’s including the New York Philharmonic, the Royal Concertgebouw Orchestra, Pittsburgh Symphony, Cleveland Orchestra, and the New Jersey Symphony.  And, as a soloist with the Philadelphia Orchestra and the Utah Symphony. Amanda has been the recipient of several awards including grand prize in the Philadelphia Orchestra’s Greenfield Competition and a twice district winner of the Metropolitan Opera National Council Awards.

It is her pleasure to serve as the Planning Committee Chairperson for the 25th Moravian Music Festival and to serve the Moravian Church. Amanda lives in Winston-Salem with her husband, Scott and her favorite pup, Baxter.

Deborah Rice

Handbell Director & Clinician

Debbie Rice is a prolific arranger and sought-after clinician, handbell director, and clinician. Former President of the American Guild of English Handbell Ringers.

Debbie draws on her vast experience as a professional singer, choral conductor and passion for teaching to encourage high standards for the handbell and handchime instrument to be musical and worshipful. Her degrees are in music education, opera, and musical theater. She has also studied early music and conducting. Debbie maintains a demanding travel schedule as clinician, adjudicator and conductor with international assignments including Australia, Canada, Estonia, Finland, Germany, Great Britain, Hong Kong, Israel, Korea, Japan, Netherlands, Singapore, Switzerland and Taiwan.

Her professional experience has included Director of Handbell Ministries at Becks Baptist Church, Winston-Salem; Artistic Director for New River Ringers, Independence, VA; Adjunct Professor in Music for Concordia University of Edmonton, Alberta, CA.

With the American Guild of English Handbell Ringers (AGEHR) (rebranded as Handbell Musicians of America in 2011), she chaired numerous committees and held elected offices on the National Board as Area Chair, National Secretary, and National President. In 2014, she was awarded Honorary Life membership, the Guild’s highest honor. Debbie serves as Past Executive Director of the International Handbell Committee.

Anne Saxon

Children's Music Director

Anne Saxon is currently the Director of the Children’s and Youth Choir Program at Home Moravian Church, and the Winston-Salem Girls Chorus. She has served numerous churches and schools in the NC Triad area.

Saxon holds a Master of Music Degree in Choral Conducting from UNC Greensboro, and a Bachelor of Music Education Degree from Greensboro College, Piano Applied. She has also earned a Level 3 Certification in Doreen Rao’s Choral Music Experience, and Level 3 Certification in the Chorister’s Guild Institute, and is currently pursuing a Certificate in Dalcroze-Eurhythmics. At UNCG she studied with Drs. Bill Carroll, Richard Cox, and Hilary Apfelstadt, and directed the Women’s Glee Club. She has completed further study in conducting with Paul Salamunovich, Anton Armstrong, Lynne Gackle, Henry Leck, Daniel Bara, and Kenney Potter.

Saxon is the President of the NC Chapter of the American Choral Director’s Association where her work as the former Newsletter Editor garnered two national awards. Also an active member of the NC Music Educators’ Association, she has been a festival site coordinator and served on the Middle School Choral Board. She has been honored with a Commemorative Brick on the MENC “Walk of Fame” for her 25 years of participation at the NC Summer Institute in Choral Arts, and currently serves on the board of CANTUS, an Ecumenical Children’s Choir Camp in North Carolina. She is a frequent guest conductor and piano accompanist for Honor and Festival Choirs, and an adjudicator for choral festivals.

Dr. Donna Rothrock

Trombone Choir

Dr. Donna Rothrock, Festival Trombone Choir Director, serves as Associate Librarian and Assistant Professor of Music at Salem College.  In these positions, she manages the Fine Arts Center Library, teaches in the School of Music, and serves as faculty liaison for Pi Kappa Lambda, the music honor society. Dr. Rothrock has taught music in both public and private schools in North Carolina, as well as in several area churches. She also held adjunct positions in music education at Appalachian State University and the University of North Carolina at Greensboro. She has served as band director at Clemmons Moravian Church since 1989 and at Trinity Moravian Church since 2011. In 1984, Dr. Rothrock founded and continues to conduct the Salem Trombone Choir (STC) in Winston-Salem, NC, which has performed throughout the southeast, Pennsylvania, and in Germany. The STC and Salem College were privileged to host both the 14th and 19th North Carolina Trombone Festivals, held in 2011 and 2016. She has been a Moravian Music Festival participant since 1978, and served as the Festival Trombone Choir conductor at both the 21st and 23rd Festivals.

Jonathan Sidden

Soloist and Vocal Technique: Men

Jonathan Sidden is Director of Music at Trinity Moravian Church in Winston-Salem, NC.

Jonathan Sidden is a graduate of the North Carolina School of the Arts. He was resident artist at the Academy of Vocal Arts in Philadelphia. He has studied voice with John Pierce, Phyllis Tektonidis, Glenn Siebert, Marilyn Taylor and is currently studying with the internationally known teacher, Bill Schuman. Mr. Sidden has performed in over 25 operas. He was a 2002 Mid-Atlantic Regional Finalist and a 2003 Southeastern Regional Finalist in the Metropolitan Opera National Council Auditions. Mr. Sidden has assisted in the preparation of the Winston-Salem Symphony Chorale’s performances of Israel in Egypt by Handel, The Creation by Haydn, and the 2002 Holiday Concert. He assisted Maestro James Allbritten with Piedmont Opera Theatre’s concert of Verdi’s Aida in October of 2004.

Over the summer of 2004, Mr. Sidden revised the Winston-Salem/Forsyth County School System curriculum for High School chorus. He has served as Chairperson for the WS/FC High School Choral Directors and NCMEA adjudicator for the State Choral Festival and All-State Zone Rehearsal coordinator for the central portion of North Carolina.

Jonathan served as Choral Director at Parkland Magnet School, where his chorus won acclaim.

He is currently the Assistant Principal of Davie County High School in Mocksville, NC.


Joni Roos

Chamber Music Coordinator

Joni Roos is in great demand as a teacher, performer, and clinician in the Central Florida area.  As Artist-in-Residence at Rollins College in Winter Park, Florida, she teaches violin and viola, directs the Rollins String Ensemble, and coaches the Rollins Orchestra. She has made numerous concerto appearances with the Chamber Orchestra of Florida, the Space Coast Pops, the Brevard Community Orchestra, and the Bach Festival Orchestra.  She is Concertmaster of the Chamber Orchestra of Florida, the Space Coast Pops, and Principal Second of the Bach Festival Orchestra

Mary Wilson

Soloist and Vocal Technique: Women

Mary Wilson, soprano, enjoys a wide-ranging career singing chamber music, oratorio, and operatic repertoire with consistent critical acclaim. She has appeared nationwide with symphony orchestras and choral festivals, Carnegie Hall and the Hollywood Bowl, and was named an Emerging Artist by Symphony Magazine in the publication’s first ever presentation of promising classical soloists on the rise. She is an accomplished pianist and interpreter of Baroque repertoire, singing regularly with renowned early music ensembles. She is Assistant Professor of Voice at the University of Memphis, and resides in Memphis, Tennessee, with her husband, son, and two dogs.

Beth Juran

Music for Younger Children

Beth Juran will lead Music for Younger Children (K – 2nd grade)

Beth is Director of Children’s Music at Maple Springs United Methodist Church in Winston-Salem.

Beth has a BA in Education with a concentration in Music from Wake Forest University.  In 1983 she took her first workshop on teaching children’s choirs from Helen Kemp at Westminster Choir College. Besides Maple Springs, she has also directed the children’s choirs at First Presbyterian in W-S and Holy Family Catholic Church in Clemmons. She is also a trained Kindermusik Educator and has been teaching Kindermusik for 30 years.

Jayson Snipes

Finale music software

Jayson is an accomplished organist, conductor, composer, arranger, and editor; who uses and understands Finale music software. In his workshop he’ll lead us in a demonstration of tips and tricks, what works and what doesn’t. Advice on how to get started, or how to refine your work.

Jayson Alan Snipes, a native of Winston-Salem, NC, received the B.M. in Music Education and the M.M. in Choral Conducting from The University of North Carolina at Greensboro where he studied organ with Robert Burns King; voice with Ellen Linton and Levone Tobin-Scott; and conducting with William P. Carroll, Carole J. Ott, and Welborn E. Young. Jayson has served as organist of Friedland Moravian and Mount Tabor United Methodist Churches in Winston-Salem before becoming music director of Maple Springs United Methodist Church in 2009.

In 2011, Jayson was appointed the instructor of the UNC Greensboro Men’s Glee Club for the 2011–2012 academic year and continues to conduct The Moramus Chorale, a non-auditioned mixed chorus that specializes in performing music of the early American Moravian tradition. Under his direction, The Moramus Chorale has performed for such organizations as Old Salem, Salem College, and in 2009 was one of the featured performances of the 23rd Moravian Music Festival. A life-long Moravian, Jayson takes particular interest in the history and study of Moravian music and has been a music editor for the Moravian Music Foundation since 2003 where his editions have been published and performed or recorded in several US states. Jayson was the guest organist for the Midwest MusicFest in Lake Mills, Wisconsin in July 2011, and in August 2012 became the choral director for Lexington Middle School in Lexington, NC where his choirs received Superior ratings in performance and sight-singing at the NCMEA Music Performance Adjudication.

Zach Bailey

Sibelius music software

Composer and arranger, using Sibelius music software. In this workshop he’ll help us figure out things that work for the music arranging we need to do!

Zach Bailey hails from Lititz, Pennsylvania in the heart of Pennsylvania Dutch Country.  He displayed a unique musical talent at a very young age and began his formal training with piano lessons at age eleven.  This spread to a dedicated study of voice, guitar, music history, theory, aural training, and musical theater during his high school years, all the while writing small tunes, piano solos, and guitar/vocal songs.  College brought courses in composition, orchestration, symphonic history, and world music, and he further developed his skills with brass arrangements, hymns, and two choral works.  He also learned to play the tuba (on his grandfather’s old Marine Corps sousaphone) and the organ during this time.  He earned his bachelor’s degree from Millersville University in 2012.

Zach’s current compositional output includes sacred and secular choral works, orchestral pieces, chamber music, works for solo instruments, and many songs.  His compositional style evokes the quiet, pastoral farmlands of his hometown and is influenced by the works of Samuel Barber, Arvo Pärt, Morten Lauridsen, Eric Whitacre, and Robert Convery, with whom Zach studied composition in 2009.  His works have been performed by the Lancaster Mennonite High School Chorale, the Duke Street Brass, the Lititz Moravian Senior and Trombone Choirs, the Acafellas (Alfred University, NY), and the ZT Chapter of the Phi Mu Alpha Sinfonia, Indiana University of Pennsylvania.  He remains an active performing musician and currently sings tenor in the professional acappella quartet Break From Blue Collar, for which he also writes and arranges music.

Festival Committee

Amanda Moody Schumpert, Festival Local Arrangements Chair

Peggy Dodson, Committee and Hospitality

I. B. and Carol Southerland, Committee and Registration

Sally McLeod, Committee and Marketing and Public Relations

Jeff Whitsett, Committee and Orchestra Manager, and Transportation

Mary Rights, Committee and Children’s Program Coordinator

Hal Garrison, Committee and Organ Crawl

Montine Pfohl Wilkinson, Committee

Tommy Cole, Facilities

Chris Stone and Mark Goslen, Head Ushers

Chris Jones, Lovefeast

Frank Martin, Sound and Recording Engineer

Jason Kubicki, Video Recording Engineer

Rt. Rev. Lane Sapp, Devotions Coordinator

Nola R. Knouse, Music Director

Gwyneth Michel, Education Team Liaison

Margaret Brady, Office Manager, Registrations

Erik Salzwedel, Planning, PR, Registrations, and Logistics

The Moravian Music Festival is a week filled with music, laughter, fellowship, study, and opportunities for worship and spiritual growth. Sponsored by the Moravian Music Foundation, the Festival is blessed with many talented leaders. Read about them here!